This post has been replaced by a more modern article on Bicycle Joker Playing Cards.
The Bicycle Joker is among the most classic American jokers. It might be the premier American joker. Bicycle Playing Cards are a brand and are published by the US Playing Card Company (Note in the corners the how the U and S are print on top of each other. It's the US Playing Card Company symbol).
This section does NOT include Unicycle Jokers (check it out, there are almost 50 unicycle jokers!) but it does include all two wheeled and in some cases four wheeled cycles. More on that below. BTW, this article was updated early 2021.
|Bicycle Card Joker|
An interesting yellow coloring...
Before we leave the classic Bicycle joker section, lets do a little history. This bicycle design dates all the way back to the time when the joker was first created! The origin story of jokers is that the "Best Bower" was an extra card required by the game of euchre. Look at the date on the bottom of this card: 1885. The Hochman Encyclopedia of Cards (Page 90) shows this design as RMP, 1885. (This one is not an original, it is from a modern reproduction deck published by USPC).
BTW: I have worked in education for the last two decades and one thing that I've come to believe is that through any real vein of interest, people can learn vast amounts. So in this case, from jokers, I've learned about the history of bicycles. I understand the old Big Wheel bikes and have them in my mind positioned in history (1895). Maybe now would be a good time to click through and see how the whole collection is organized?
The last bicycle joker to be pictured is a modern design by the incomparable joker designer, Randy Butterfield. I hope to interview him soon to get the inside scoop on the story of this design.